PUWU, ECG advised against litigation
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Litigation will not provide the solution in the impasse over the privatization of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG).

The solution lies in “a conversation” between management and workers of the company to settle their differences, says Austin Gamey, a renowned labour expert.

The Public Utilities Workers Union (PUWU) on Tuesday, sued the three key institutions implementing the privatization of the ECG over claims for redundancy package.

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The suit, which aimed at halting the privatization process, was filed against the management of ECG, the Attorney-General and the Millennium Development Authority (MiDA) is in respect of the non-payment of redundancy package to its members.

According to the PUWU, the employer has not shown good faith in involving the workers in the process, and had failed to spell out their redundancy package before a prospective concessionaire takes over.

But Mr. Gamey, in an interview with ADR Daily, feared that the legal option taken by the Union would not be very productive.

“The motive behind such a move can be justified because with big moves like these there may be some concerns as to whether some severances may occur but it is not advisable to seek aid in the courts,” he stated.

He said the Union and the employer needed to have a conversation to resolve the dispute.

“With such an issue, I would advise that the union and the employer sits down to discuss redundancy packages.

“It is not fair on both sides to sit in court and spend time and money to resolve a matter they can resolve themselves through a conversation,” he added.

PUWU in writ filed at the Accra High Court on Tuesday argued that a handover of the nation’s power distributor to a concessionaire would affect its members for which a package needs to be provided the workers.

Mr. Gamey indicated that “the government has no role to play in determining redundancy packages. It can only advise the concessionaire.”

“It is up to PUWU to sit and talk with the concessionaire to come up with a settlement. If that cannot be achieved, then they can seek backing in the tripartite committee or the Labour Commission.

“I believe that the PUWU can come to an out of court resolution. They must sit and talk together with the concessionaire and come to peaceful settlement,” he added.

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